Houston Nightlife: The Best Bars in the Bay Area

Photo courtesy of Cabo Clear Lake

Houston comes alive at night, with dives, cocktail bars, and nightclubs dotting the city. In our Houston Nightlife: Best Bars, we’ll cover the best night owl watering holes in each neighborhood.

It only takes a quick trip to Houston’s breezy bayside region to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. Hugging the coastline from Seabrook to San Leon, and then some, not only does it offer waterfront views and a laid-back vibe, it also rocks plenty of tasty watering holes and nightlife spots.

Note: For the purposes of this list, the Bay Area covers neighborhoods including Baybrook, Dickinson, El Lago, Kemah, League City, Nassau Bay, San Leon, and Seabrook.

The Best Bars in the Bay Area

  • Barge 295 – Sitting right on Clear Lake, this floating bar and grill offers two levels of full bars, patios, and views of the lake. Head here an excellent selection of craft beers and refreshing cocktails, as well as fun, breezy events like DJ nights and live bands on Sundays. And don’t forget to tack on seafood eats from ahi tuna and shrimp tacos to Texas-style lobster rolls. Click here for directions.
  • Cabo Bar & GrillThis laidback bar and grill rocks a deck with views of Clear Lake, pool tables, and fun stuff like DJs, cover bands, beer pong, and steak night. Grab a local craft brew from the rotating taps, or knock down whiskey alongside taco plates, loaded queso, and burgers stacked with peanut butter, bacon, and grilled jalapeños. Click here for directions.
  • MaraisHead to Dickinson and you’ll find a bayou-front oasis complete with an elevated “treehouse” terrace, waterfront deck, and beer garden. Unwind at Marais Bar and transport yourself straight to New Orleans, grab a swing-seat at Benson’s and get views of the bayou, party at The Plank, the pirate-themed bar right on the water’s edge, play games, and enjoy the fire pits at Dickinbach, the outdoor beer garden. And be sure to look out for a lineup of events, from live music to Girls Night Out. Click here for directions.
  • Noah’s Ark On Friday and Saturday nights, this Bacliff bar and grill rocks live music and karaoke in its upstairs “Parrot’s Nest” Palapa Bar. Head to the bayside spot to party it up with jalapeño margaritas, piña coladas, and fuzzy monkey shots, and snack on house specialties like the Hot Mermaids, beer-battered and fried shrimp with a jalapeño wrapped in bacon. Click here for directions.
  • Skallywag Suds N’ GrubEscape the city at this fun time neighborhood bar, which rocks Mai Tais, whiskey sours, and jalapeño ‘ritas over in Kemah, plus a full lineup of craft taps and plenty of TVs. Click here for directions.
  • T-Bone Tom’s This Bay Area treasure isn’t just for steaks and barbecue, you’ll also find live music and an easy-going vibe in Tom’s Backyard. Sip pitchers of local suds, voodoo and hurricane cocktails, frozen margaritas and more as you take down late-night eats from boudin balls and blazing hot wings to bbq stuffed potatoes and housemade sausage. Click here for directions.

More Great Bar Options in the Bay Area

Sip island-inspired craft cocktails at Seabrook tiki bar, the Volcano Room; go big on German biers and housemade brats at Stuttgarden Tavern; cozy up to the bar for beers and wood-fired pies at Boondoggles Pizzeria & Pub; get late night pints and popcorn shrimp at Sam’s Boat Seabrook; grab a game a pool and a cheap pint at Scotty’s Pub on the Bay; hit League City to mix beer, wine, and sports at Chuck’s Sports Bar & Memorabilia; and enjoy more than a 100 cherry-picked wines at El Lago’s Chelsea Wine Bar.

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Brooke Viggiano is a food and lifestyle writer residing in Houston. When she's not contributing to publications like 365 Things to Do in Houston, Thrillist Houston and the Houston Press, she's on the hunt for the coolest happenings in the city. You can follow her musings on Twitter @BrookeViggiano .